Gone are the days where a tour company operator can be satisfied with answering their phone, scribbling down a reservation in their planner and accepting a payment via check or cash.

You might think that you do not need an online reservation system, but most travelers in today’s world are looking to book their reservations online, whether they are planning on a nice dinner in your area or they want to take an excursion while they stop through town.

It is easier and more convenient for guests to book online, as they can pay instantly with their credit card as well as receive an immediate confirmation of their reservation.

As more and more people book their entire trips online, tourism professionals need to know what their options are when it comes to online booking systems.

Option #1: Custom Built Software

Custom built software can be created specifically for your company by a development professional. This is the most expensive option, but if your tour company is large enough it might be worth the investment.

Pros:

  • The software can be designed to your exact needs. This means you have complete and total control over the project.
  • You decide how you want the back end to look, and you help to make sure the portal for the customers is as straight forward and easy as possible.
  • You decide which functions are best for you, and you can create features that work best for your company. For instance, if you are a bicycle rental facility you can include features that allow customers to choose a specific bike.

Cons:

  • First and foremost, this is a very expensive route to go. While you will have complete control, you also are responsible for the entirety of the costs.
  • You will take on the responsibility for maintaining the software. It’s important to recognize that there won’t be a 24/7 customer support line that you can call when things go wrong. You will have to contact the developer.
  • Implementing this software as well as fixing any bugs that crop up can be time consuming, so don’t expect to get it all up and running quickly. Many businesses consider it all worth it in the end, but it definitely has to be considered when thinking about the type of online booking system that you want.

Option #2: Ready-made Online Booking Software

Software that is already designed and ready to go is often the easiest way to implement an online booking system. This software is designed to address the general needs of most tour company operators, so it is often a convenient choice that is very functional at the same time.

Pros:

  • This type of software can be implemented and put to use in a very short period of time. It takes you minutes instead of months to get going.
  • It provides a variety of features that tour companies can decide to use if they wish, including options for different languages and currencies if you attract international travelers.
  • It is a more affordable option, but at the same time does not inconvenience the customer. The customer still gets a professional and convenient booking experience, and you usually only pay a set monthly fee.
  • One of the huge benefits is the fact that there is customer support available whenever a manager needs it, so no one is left hanging when they want to book a reservation with you.

Cons:

  • You won’t be able to custom create features that sound cool to you, but you are able to suggest them to software developers. These vendors will take suggestions from all their customers, and add them to their system. Because of this it can be very practical for the small business owner.
  • It is important to note that some software programs ask for a percentage of the commission that is earned from the tours, but other programs, such as Rezdy, do not ask for this surcharge.

As you are making this important decision regarding your online booking system, take the time to consider exactly what it is your business needs at this point in time. Some of the most important factors to consider are the amount of time you are willing to invest in your online booking system and also how much money you are willing to spend.

If you have no restrictions on your time or budget, the custom route may be the choice for you. But if you are a busy tour or activity operator who simply wants to be working with your customers and providing them the best experience possible, you might want to consider a ready-made software program like Rezdy, because all the software-related hassles are handled by your provider.

If you are interested in educating yourself on your online booking options, the information in our Buyer’s Guide to Online Booking Software Selection for Tour Operators can prevent you from picking software that doesn’t suit your tour or activity business:





online booking guide




Or if you’re keen to try out Rezdy to see what option #2 would look like, click on the link below. No set-up or upfront fee, no installation, and no credit card required.

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Join over 30,000 tour and activity professionals on Rezdy

Simon Lenoir, Founder and CEO of Rezdy Online Booking Software

About Simon Lenoir

Simon has over 15 years’ experience as an IT professional. He also has extensive experience in the travel industry from being an around-the-world traveller and managing a dive centre in Southeast Asia for over 3 years. Simon is now dedicated to providing the best online booking solution for tours and activities operators; he is the brains behind Rezdy.
Outside office hours Simon is a true activity addict – mountain biking, sailing, swimming, beach volleyball – just to name a few. But most of all he loves diving in Australian waters.

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What Are Your Online Booking Options?

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Gone are the days where a tour company operator can be satisfied with answering their phone, scribbling down a reservation in their planner and accepting a payment via check or cash.

You might think that you do not need an online reservation system, but most travelers in today’s world are looking to book their reservations online, whether they are planning on a nice dinner in your area or they want to take an excursion while they stop through town.

It is easier and more convenient for guests to book online, as they can pay instantly with their credit card as well as receive an immediate confirmation of their reservation.

As more and more people book their entire trips online, tourism professionals need to know what their options are when it comes to online booking systems.

Option #1: Custom Built Software

Custom built software can be created specifically for your company by a development professional. This is the most expensive option, but if your tour company is large enough it might be worth the investment.

Pros:

Cons:

Option #2: Ready-made Online Booking Software

Software that is already designed and ready to go is often the easiest way to implement an online booking system. This software is designed to address the general needs of most tour company operators, so it is often a convenient choice that is very functional at the same time.

Pros:

Cons:

As you are making this important decision regarding your online booking system, take the time to consider exactly what it is your business needs at this point in time. Some of the most important factors to consider are the amount of time you are willing to invest in your online booking system and also how much money you are willing to spend.

If you have no restrictions on your time or budget, the custom route may be the choice for you. But if you are a busy tour or activity operator who simply wants to be working with your customers and providing them the best experience possible, you might want to consider a ready-made software program like Rezdy, because all the software-related hassles are handled by your provider.

If you are interested in educating yourself on your online booking options, the information in our Buyer’s Guide to Online Booking Software Selection for Tour Operators can prevent you from picking software that doesn’t suit your tour or activity business:





online booking guide




Or if you’re keen to try out Rezdy to see what option #2 would look like, click on the link below. No set-up or upfront fee, no installation, and no credit card required.